Welcome to my second installment about the Tarosophy Tarot Conference that I attended in Dallas, Texas from October 19 through 21.
My friend Judy and I arrived on Friday in the late afternoon. Most of the people were out at a dinner and dance event, so Judy and I enjoyed drinks and dinner in one of the courtyards with a glorious fountain with a flame in the centre of it. It reminded me of an old temple of the oracle — appropriate! When the others got back, it was a great treat to catch up with old friends and connect in person with folk I only knew online. One of the beauties of such tarot gatherings is the creation and deepening of friendships.
Barbara Moore is becoming more interested in how the human brain works. Her presentation focused on using different parts of the brain in our tarot readings. She stressed the importance of knowing what your reading style is. This includes knowing what each of us believes about how the future works, our role as a reader, and the role of a tarot reading. Barbara had us begin our sample tarot consultations with Scanning, a way of providing a sketch or foundation that can inform the rest of the session. This includes noticing the exteme numbers of, and/or patterns with regard to reversals, majors, courts, suits, numbers, and visual symbols. Barbara’s presentation was an excellent reminder to really “land” in a spread of cards before getting to the details.
Question: Is this a hanging man or is it hard bread? (Sorry. It’s an in-joke)
Enrique Enriquez‘s brand of tarot reading, based on pataphysics, shone in his session called “Patois Physique”. His visual approach, especially with the Marseille-style trumps, is very fresh in a field that often talks about meanings. Here is one of Enrique’s statements that not only cracked us up, but opened up our imaginations: “Asking questions of pieces of cardboard is crazy. This is why it works so well; it takes us out of the rational.” I enjoyed Enrique’s idea that the cards are a score for a performance and the notion that we can find something of a card in any other card. His reading style is rooted in these principles: elements that look alike are conceptually related; elements that are in the same position are related; link these elements by the words “turns into” or “becomes”. So simple, yet reliant on the practitioner being present enough to notice the details in every card. A great lesson in mindfulness!
The later time slot contained three breakout sessions. I chose to work with Dr. Art Rosengarten whom I hadn’t seen in person in about seven years. Art offered a sort of council/ritual/experiential piece in which each of us drew a card from his deck, the Tarot of the Nine Paths, then spoke as a Council of Elders about the formation, intention, and growth of Tarot Town. On by one, we got into the centre and, as our tarot card character, posed a question about the community. People in the circle, as their tarot characters, took turns responding to each question. As the experience progressed, the questions and responses felt less “thought out” and more authentic. I felt myself entering a very sensitive and receptive state that allowed me to access the Magician within (that was my card). I appreciate(d) that Art took us to such a rich place in such a playful manner.
After socialising and dinner, I gave my after-dinner presentation. Details about that are in my previous post about the conference. There was a late evening workshop on tarot and the “Lord’s Prayer” given by Katrina Wynne and Paul Nagy. Alas, I didn’t get to this one because I was already very full and satisfied for the day. Perhaps another participant can fill us in on the details of that presentation.
Even after Day One of the Tarot Con, I was ready to say, “Hats off!” to Marcus Katz and Tali Goodwin for their vision and execution of this conference. It was a good first day. Stay tuned for the third installment about this very good gathering.